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Council to introduce new dog control orders

The council will introduce new enhanced dog control laws.

THE council looks set to introduce new enhanced dog control laws, which will tackle fouling, dogs not keep on leads and a range of other problems posed by the popular pets and their errant owners.

In a separate report put before the Environment Committee, members have been informed of the Dog Control Orders which will replace the current system of bye-laws in parks and open spaces.

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The Clean Neighbourhood and Environment Act also allows the Council to increase the Fixed Penalty to a maximum of £80 for each offence and crucially permits the authorised officer to issue a Fixed Penalty to the dog owner, whether or not they were with the dog at the time of the offence.

This means that the offence can also be applied to straying dogs, therefore giving stronger powers to Council Enforcement Officers.

The report acknowledged that other councils had sparked controversy with new Dog Control Orders.

Back in 2013 Coleraine council sparked controversy when they proposed banning dogs from a number of beaches and walkways along the north coast.

“For this reason, the recommendation below is that Fermanagh and Omagh District Council adopt a phased approach, beginning with the introduction of a Fouling of Land by Dogs Order throughout the Council area which is not likely to generate negative publicity,” the report concluded.

The new dog control orders can be used to address a number of problems including, failing to remove dog faeces, not keeping a dog on a lead, not putting and keeping a dog on a lead when directed to do so by an authorised officer, permitting a dog to enter land from which dogs are excluded and taking more than the specified number of dogs onto land.

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